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PT Cruiser Overheating due to radiator leak?

 
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Old 22 Oct 2012, 12:33 pm
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Question PT Cruiser Overheating due to radiator leak?

I'm having some issues with my 2001 Cruiser. It has been overheating as of late and is leaking almost all the coolant out about every two days. I tried stop leak and it lasted about a week. A day or so after putting the stop leak in I noticed that quite a bit of it had sprayed out all over the top of my engine. The spray pattern came from the middle/top of the radiator area. After the constant loss of coolant, I have been putting only water in the radiator to save some money while I figure this issue out. If the car sits, the fluid will stay. It only loses it while it's being driven. I don't want to keep running it with water as I don't know if that will cause any further damage or not. I know if the outside temp drops to below freezing it might too freeze..So I am trying to nip this as soon as I can.

A few days ago I began to notice a boiling and hissing sound coming from the radiator area after I would turn my car off. There has even been steam coming from the area. I decided to stop and hop out after driving for a while and take a look at the hot engine. I took a video and you can clearly see the water leaking out from the top/front of the radiator.

Pt cruiser radiator leak - YouTube
Volume is a little loud with the video

If I am sitting in traffic or a drive-thru I can watch the temp gauge go up. If I turn my heater on full blast, the gauge starts to fall. It has only once gotten into the red though. I am trying to not drive it as much as possible until I figure this problem out.

Some things I have already attempted:
Changed out the radiator cap
Flushed the system
Checked hose connections
Fan is working
Oil looks fine
No loss of power while driving

I'm thinking it might be that the radiator needs replacing and/or the thermostat. I'm going to first try the thermostat before I change the radiator.

Thoughts? Could it be a blown head gasket causing these kinds of issues?
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Old 22 Oct 2012, 03:30 pm
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Default Re: PT Cruiser Overheating due to radiator leak?

Start with the smallest; replace your thermostat (since it's cheap and easy to do) and check for leaks.

As far as 'flushing' your system, did you burp the system properly? Takes awhile trying to get all the air out of the system which too could cause overheating issues.

If you have to go as far as to replacing your radiator, I've got a walk-through I created (with pictures) that'll get you by.
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Old 22 Oct 2012, 03:33 pm
Kawizx9r's Avatar
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Default Re: PT Cruiser Overheating due to radiator leak?

One more thing, if your cooling fan isn't running properly (high or low speed out) it could cause overheating as well.

PS Don't use that stop-leak crap. You can completely damage your entire cooling system.
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